Friday, October 11, 2013

Newsletter October 11, 2013

Special Notes
* What a week of great news.  We were front page news on Tuesday; I will send home a copy of the article today for those who have not seen it.  Monday we were also told that my Donorschoose project was fully funded by US Cellular.  This means that we will get $600 worth of new books for our library! 
* We had another Mystery Skype this week with mixed results.  The students guessed it correctly but Zach led us through a great discussion of where we needed to improve.  I have scheduled another one for next week.
* What a great PTO dance.  Thea and I loved seeing all of you and couldn’t believe the turn out.   
* We go to the Overture center next week, thank you to all who have offered to chaperone; I will pull a random name and let the person know.
* My pregnancy continues to keep Brandon and me on our toes, we have been facing some complications so there have been a few extra doctors’ appointments, I try to schedule them outside of school as much as possible.  I apologize for any extra absences this may cause.      
* Finally, a huge thank you to all of you for supporting this classroom and me.  I have the best job in the world and I am thrilled to be the teacher of these incredible children.
* Dates for your calendar:  Mrs. Ripp sub in PM for literacy meeting Monday, October 14th, Field trip to the Overture October 17th 11:30 to 2 PM, No school Thursday, October 24th and Friday, October 25th, Fall/Harvest/Halloween party moved to Friday, November 1st 1 PM,   Picture re-take is Tuesday, November 5th, Conferences start the week of November 11th, I will send out confirmations slips.

Math We are at the end of unit 2 with the test scheduled for Monday.  This unit has covered a lot of basic skills and a lot of new vocabulary.  I encourage all students to study for the test.  Pre-test for unit 3 will be Tuesday and then we start a new unit Wednesday with new groups.  Students may be with a lot of the same students or with all new students, it just depends on their needs.
Social Studies – We had our first genius hour project this week, with many students creating really neat projects showcasing their learning.  I have discussed with the kids, how these projects should be small, they should not involve hours of work at home or parental involvement.  It is just a chance for them to research something they are interested in under the topic we are exploring in chapter 2, particularly since we have discussed Native Americans in previous years as well.  All zombie presentations have been put on our website.
Science – The planes are coming, somehow.  We did our lifeboats research and are now ready to move into the sky, or pretend to be anyway, with our plane investigation.  We are getting better at getting to work in science and getting through the lesson, time is definitely limited at the end of the day. 
Reading I have loved our reading conversations this week and seeing certain books be passed from student to student.  The kids have also begged for more read aloud with our Global Read Aloud book, it has been wonderful connecting with other classrooms around the world who share many of our same questions and concerns.  We are hard at work becoming better thinkers about our reading and I have loved seeing the way students are pushing their thinking.  This is a lifelong goal, not just a 5th grade one.

Writing This week we started drafting our essays, some students are even close to done and will be challenged in other ways.  All students will automatically have their essays entered into the Yahara River Writers contest for editorials if they want to and we will be sending them to the WI State Journal as well to see if we can get any of them published.  I love the passion that has been in the essays for their topics.  

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